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Frank Mundo

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LA Times Festival of Books: Conversation with Carolyn See, Lisa See and Barbara Isenberg
4/27/2010 4:29:09 AM    [ Flag as Inappropriate ]

Panel discussions with California authors Carolyn See, Lisa See, and suspense writers Karin Slaughter, David Ellis and more from the LA Times Festival of Books.

Carolyn See and Lisa See at the LA times Festival of Books, Photo by Nancy MundoIf thereís anything to critique about this yearís LA Times Festival of Books itís that there were so many great events, so many authors, so many panels, so many booths, so much going on at the various stages that it was tough to choose which events to attend. Two days just isnít enough time!

That being said, thanks to some careful planning and a few tough decisions, the LA Books Examiner did everything possible and had a great time in the process. Yesterday I shared a slide show highlighting various readers at LA Times Poetry Stage, and today Iíll share another slideshow from a couple of the panel discussions that made the tough decisions seem like the right ones.

But first I wanted to discuss in detail one panel I attended with California authors Carolyn See and Lisa See in Conversation with author Barbara Isenberg, which not surprisingly, filled UCLA's Young Hall to capacity.

Carolyn See, the Grand Dame of California Literature, is a long-time book critic for the Washington Post, former UCLA professor, and bestselling author of 11 fiction and non-fiction books. Her latest book is There Will Never Be Another You.

In answering questions from moderator Barbara Isenberg, author of Conversations with Frank Gehry, Carolyn shared some great anecdotes and advice about her life, her career, and her unique family history that plays such an important role in her writing. Her father, whose link to the world of pornography, became a humorous touchstone the authors, and even the audience during Q&A, returned to several times for a good laugh.

Carolyn also revealed that she is working on a new memoir about growing old, which led to a powerful and surprising revelation of a dark period in her life that, after a string of deaths of some of her close friends and loved ones and other painful events, had Carolyn questioning her purpose on the planet. For most people, this serious confession couldíve grinded such an event to a halt. But, Carolyn, in her typical fashion, somehow found the humor in it all, and quickly had us laughing again, seemingly at her -- and our own -- mortality. I canít wait for this book!

For Lisa See, daughter of Carolyn See, and the bestselling author of six novels, including her latest book Shanghai Girls, history, the importance of place, and the roles and relationships of women were some of the topics she discussed while sharing wonderful stories about her Chinese-American familyís long history in California. She talked about research and the importance of preserving our collective Californian history through writing and educational opportunities. She also revealed that she was more than 200 pages in to a new book, a sequel to Shanghai Girls, which after some urging from Isenberg (and a series of telepathic requests the LA Books Examiner) she gave us a bit of what we could expect.

Check out the slide show which also includes photos from a panel discussion called Mystery: The Page Turners. Moderated by veteran LA Times critic and mystery author Mary McNamara, this panel featured mega-bestselling suspense writers Karin Slaughter, David Ellis, Andrew Gross and Gregg Hurwitz.

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Shanghai Girls: an Interview with Bestselling Author Lisa See

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More Blogs by Frank Mundo
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• Underground Heroes Feature - Saturday, June 02, 2012
• Book Review: The Brubury Tales - Thursday, May 24, 2012
• Two New Interviews - Friday, May 04, 2012
• Free on Kindle Today - Tuesday, April 03, 2012
• My book made Amazon's List for Bestselling Poetry Books - Wednesday, March 28, 2012
• A Literary Achievement - Monday, February 27, 2012
• I was interviewed by the Los Angeles Public Library - Sunday, February 12, 2012
• Exciting series of short stories that reads like a novel - Sunday, February 12, 2012
• These stories are so full of soul! - Sunday, September 18, 2011
• Gary, the Four-Eyed Fairy and Other Stories - Tuesday, July 26, 2011
• Writers Row in the Downtown Art Walk - Wednesday, June 08, 2011
• Author Susan Whitfield Interviewed Me For Her Blog - Thursday, May 05, 2011
• First short story from my next book - Wednesday, April 27, 2011
• The Brubury Tales wins Poetry Book of The Year - Tuesday, March 01, 2011
• My book The Brubury Tales is a Finalist for Reader View's 2010 Poetry Book of the Year - Thursday, February 17, 2011
• Poetry reading at The Rapp Saloon in Santa Monica (video) - Tuesday, February 08, 2011
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• Review of Sweet Dreams: a family history by DeWitt Henry - Monday, January 17, 2011
• Grief Transformation: Writing and Reading as Therapy - Monday, January 03, 2011
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• The Raven by Edgar Allen Poe (video reading) - Sunday, October 31, 2010
• (VIDEO) Me reading my book The Brubury Tales at UCLA's Kerckhoff Hall - Tuesday, October 19, 2010
• Reading of the Brubury Tales - Thursday, September 30, 2010
• Interviewed by Pets and Authors - Monday, July 19, 2010
• Reviews of The Brubury Tales - Wednesday, July 14, 2010
• The Giving To Challenge - Sunday, June 20, 2010
• I finally finished it. Very exciting. - Saturday, June 12, 2010
• I had my first radio interview: Big mistakes I made that could help us all learn - Sunday, June 06, 2010
• Reece Hirsch shares the first chapter of his new book The Insider - Wednesday, May 12, 2010
• A Day at the Beach: In Memory of Joe Mundo - Wednesday, May 05, 2010
•  LA Times Festival of Books: Conversation with Carolyn See, Lisa See and Barbara Isenberg  - Tuesday, April 27, 2010  
• 10 of my favorite poets - Friday, April 16, 2010
• Six Fun National Poetry Month online activities - Saturday, April 10, 2010
• Self-Publishing Stigma? - Wednesday, March 24, 2010
• Pieces of Happily Ever After - Monday, March 22, 2010
• Interview with Elif Shafak, bestselling author of The Forty Rules of Love - Thursday, March 04, 2010
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